Two All-Star point guards took the floor on Wednesday evening, one representing the Western conference San Antonio Spurs, and the other representing the Eastern conference Chicago Bulls.
The hype was built around this point guard duel as Derrick Rose of the Bulls, the reigning MVP, was going head-to-head with Tony Parker of the Spurs, a point guard whose name has been in MVP discussions this season.
Who was the most elite guard on the floor Wednesday? The reigning MVP, as Rose lead the Chicago Bulls to a 96-89 victory in San Antonio, which is a place the Spurs rarely lose (13-2) at.
Rose had 29 points to the lead the Bulls, but more credit goes to the Bulls’ relentless defense which put their clamps on the Spurs’ efficient offense when it mattered most, the fourth quarter.
Parker (11 points, 9 assists) and Rose got the AT&T Center fired up as Parker scored eight points in the opening quarter, and Rose scored 11 points. The Spurs and Bulls both showed their defensive identity’s as the Spurs lead 22-20 after the first.
Danny Green (11 points) and C.J. Watson (12 points) took the spotlight from Parker and Rose as they began to knock down shots from the outside as Green scored six points in the second quarter, and Watson scored 10. Rose added five more points to his total as the Bulls’ defense held the Spurs 20 points, while Chicago’s offense put 30 points on the scoreboard. The Bulls lead 50-42 going into halftime.
It was the Spurs’ defense’s time to shine in the third quarter as the Spurs held the Bulls to 6-of-23 shooting, and just 15 points in the quarter. The Spurs first went on a 7-0 run to cut the Bulls’ eight-point lead down to four points, then that run eventually turned into a 15-4 run where the Spurs tied the Bulls and eventually took the lead. Tim Duncan (18 points, 10 rebounds) and DeJuan Blair (9 points) were the reasons for the Spurs’ resurgence in the third quarter as Duncan had 12 points alone in the third quarter. The Spurs took a narrow 66-65 lead into the fourth quarter.
The Bulls are built a lot like the Spurs in that they have multiple players either starting or off their bench who can lead a charge. Ronnie Brewer was an example of that as he scored all eight of his game points in the fourth quarter. Gary Neal (21 points) was the only aggressive option on the Spurs’ offense as Neal kept the Spurs close with 14 points in the fourth quarter. But ultimately, the Bulls’ tenacious defense kept most of San Antonio’s effective role players in check. Rose’s six points and Luol Deng’s (10 points) two big three pointers in the fourth quarter were too much for the Spurs to overcome. The Bulls’ defense held the Spurs to 23 points in the final period, while the offense was able to create a 31-point fourth quarter and help the Bulls earn the victory.
With the loss, the Spurs are now 24-11 on the season. They’ll face the Charlotte Bobcats on Friday in a game they hope Kawhi Leonard and Manu Ginobili will return in.
In his return to action from injury, Spurs guard T.J. Ford played eight minutes, had two assists, and lead the team with three steals.
Stop griping and admit that the spurs were overmatched against the bulls. The bulls are taller and young. They have Noah, Asik, Boozer, Deng and a bunch of young, bigger guys like Gibson, Brewer and other guys. For long time the need for another big guy is already felt. Bonner was just standing around. He can't stand infront of his guy and hardly did he rebound. For the guy who stands 6'10" that unpardonable. Now the door is open to take in either Blatche and Kaman. Come on, everybody is saying that Blatche has issues. Who hasn't? Under Pops and the spurs coaching staff he will behave. So, Mr. Buford ACT? Trade Bonner, Jefferson and Anderson for Blatche and a ist round draft. The same with Kaman of the Hornets. What's keeping the team from acting? Stop blaming the referees or the crowd.
This was pathetic to say the least for many reasons. I usually don't like complaining about the refs, but there were so many bad calls including Neal getting a technical for having his shoe untied?!?! This game didn't even look like it was sold out and there have been Spurs games against the KINGS that were sold out. A truly poor effort by both the Spurs and the Spurs fans. This was the first time I've ever seen the Spurs fans be outnumbered by the other team's fans AT HOME.
Even the Spurs fan that sits behind the announcers had a Bulls-fan buddy with him this time.
This is what D in the playoffs looks like. I just can't expect too much if Bonner and Co. can't get their shots off quickly enough or the cutters can't make their shots with the (un-called) contact. This also reminds me of what other fans must have felt for years when the Spurs would get away with contact because of the Defensive reputation. I still feel like a 15th-rated D will not be good enough to win another chip.
@Dave_McNulla I disagree completely. The spurs defense has been great in the last 15 games. In fact Pop has been saying he's very proud of the defense this team is showing compared to the last couple of seasons. They just looked out of rhythm. I truly believe our defense can be as good or better than the bulls' defense last night. We also are a way better offensive team than the bulls. We can outscore them and hold them below 100 easily. we just didn't last night. My main gripe with last night is it's one of the few national games we have this year but we didn't show how good the team is to the world. This team is way too full of depth to not get at least to the finals. Oklahoma is gonna run out of gas by then. Durant and westbrook have to be averaging like 44 minutes each right now. And the lakers and Dallas haven't adjusted enough this season. And even once we're in the finals, I wouldn't be worrying about playing chicago over miami.
right?! Jesus! it was like a bulls home game! I hate bandwagon fans, especially the OKC and Chicago ones. I like OKC and Chicago, but where were these fans 2 years ago for the bulls? and where were they for okc before durant? Either way, the spurs could beat the bulls, especially in a series. They just came back cold and out of rhythm. Chicago played tuesday night so they were already past that.
the biggest shame of the night.... san antonio residents chanting MVP for the other teams star. disgraceful!